Museum Pays Tribute to Beatles’ ‘Help!’+ plus recap from rock hall exhibit opening.

 It was a busy weekend here in Cleveland Ohio folks!  I was doing my duty for you all my dear readers.  I was fortunate enough to attend the opening of the new Beatles’ exhibit at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame here in Cleveland, Ohio over the weekend. A splendid time really was had by all.  We were allowed first access to the new exhibit which houses artifacts and memorabilia from the famed Beatle movie.  It was amazing to see some of the costumes and script drafts that were used by the boys during the filming of the movie.

After walking through the exhibit we waited for a bit and snacked on movie-fare concessions.  Popcorn was consumed by all in between bites of sno-caps, and Reece’s Pieces.  There were also Slushies to be had as well.  All in attendance were ushered into one of two theaters (depending on which color wrist-band you had).  We were then introduced to Jerry Pam, a publicist with the Beatles at the time of the Help! movie.  It is always nice to hear someone wax nostalgic about their time withe the Fab Four.  After Jerry’s sentiments we were treated to the entire Help! movie in full surround-sound glory in the Rock Hall’s theaters.  It was wonderful.  It sounded and looked magnificent.  I’m happy that I waited to see the film, again, here in this setting.  It was outstanding.  Plus, all the people in attendance were there to celebrate, and it really was nice to see so many fans, young and old, enjoying their Beatles together.   Heck, we even got those awesome candy ring pops to suck on as we entered the event, and I haven’t had one of those in years.   

If you get a chance to come out the Rock Hall I highly recommend checking out the new exhibit.  It’s well worth the trip. 

Here’s what we’ve read.

Ed Sullivan introduced Americans to the Beatles, but “Help!” was the first time they saw the Fab Four in color. It may not sound like a big deal in an age of HDTV, but in 1965, at the height of Beatlemania, it was something to shout about.

“Kids would be screaming when the Beatles were on screen,” said Jim Henke, who recalled seeing the film as a child.

Henke, now chief curator of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, has helped pay tribute to John, Paul, George and Ringo’s madcap movie with an exhibit that opens Saturday and runs through March 30.

“Help!” went beyond the day-in-the-life story line of “A Hard Day’s Night,” the Beatles’ first film. Its plot put the band on the run from a cult and a couple of scientists out to get a ring worn by Ringo Starr.

“It was sort of a comic version of a James Bond movie,” Henke said. “There’s some pretty silly stuff.”

In one scene, John Lennon and Paul McCartney try to get Ringo to cut off his finger to get rid of the ring. “You don’t miss your tonsils do yer?” McCartney quips.

That wacky line and others wrap around a wall at the Rock Hall exhibit, which has loads of movie memorabilia and artifacts, including the cape wore by Lennon in the Austrian Alps scene, an acoustic guitar he played in the film and an olive corduroy suit with matching boots worn by George Harrison.

The motivation for United Artists to make the film was simple, said Jerry Pam, who did his part to introduce the Beatles to the United States by handling publicity for “Help!” and “A Hard Day’s Night.”

“They said, ‘Wouldn’t it be great if we could see the Beatles in color,'” Pam recalled.

That novelty is reinforced by half a dozen radio ads at the Rock Hall exhibit. “See ‘Help!’ It’s in color,” ends one ad, geared toward adults because the studio rightly assumed young fans would flock to see it.

The action-packed film included some downtime for the band to sing “You’ve Got to Hide Your Love Away” and other hits.

The title song, written by Lennon, is sort of cry for help from a band that lost its freedom because of its incredible fame, chased by fans everywhere they went – a phenomenon that seems to still dog McCartney four decades later. He was recently pursued through the Hamptons on New York’s Long Island by paparazzi seeking photos of him and his new girlfriend.

One highlight of the exhibit is audio from a 1980 interview with Lennon for an article in Playboy magazine in which he talks about the band’s state of mind at the time “Help!” was filmed. He said the movie, unlike “A Hard Day’s Night,” was out of the band’s control.

“By then, we were smoking marijuana for breakfast,” Lennon said. “Nobody could communicate with us because it was just four glazed eyes giggling all the time.”

Pam recalls the laughter and goofiness during the filming of “Help!”

“They weren’t always high. They were just full of life,” Pam said. “It got obviously exaggerated.”

Source: AP


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